In Case of Glass Break Never
Violence appeals to all of us. A simple tap-tap then just a long elevator ride down to your car.
If you're lucky, the elevator's empty. Not even your thoughts.
Just the clicking of floors and gravity of an approaching home.
But I'm not a good killer. I don't have the voice in my hands or grip in my fingers.
My hands are silent without instruction. It takes real work to get them going. I stare at them sometimes when I'm asking them to do things they'd rather not.
It wasn't the same with alcohol. If you listened to it talk, with missing teeth and wrinkly forehead, you could hear a story about a man going to close the blinds because it was time to sleep. The baby rabbits are sleeping, the mama ducks are sleeping, the construction workers are sleeping, the constitution writers are sleeping, the football players are sleeping, the singer-songwriter is sleeping, the line cooks are sleeping, the COOs are sleeping, the men's barber shop owners are sleeping, the casino dealer is sleeping, the guy who came up with basketball in Indiana is sleeping, the girl who invented Spanx is sleeping.
You always saw the depths in me.
How I fade into feelings when the laughter starts.
How I reach out for your number at holiday time.
How I follow your river when the smells get strong.
In the middle of your ocean I felt my anchor drag across the bottom and wonder why it felt like you had me there, but I wasn't marooned.
Controlled by your devious weather-making.
Defined by your portions.
I've got better things due than to be your slave.
Your flowers bloomed and died in my hands.
You think your stuff is so divine.
You think your songs are all I crave.
I'm a writer.
And I might need glasses for a while but I'm not a prisoner to your prescriptions.
I'm walking back home.
I might be out of circulation for a while.
But you're not the savior of me or a flower on my vine.
Your love isn't all I crave.
I hope you rain on someone's parade who no one cares about.
Fuck you, alcohol.
You were the only deserving victim and I'm shaking your hand off my arm.
Find a new date.
I'm your whore no more.
Did I mumble?
Will I stumble?
Might I have some blues?
Can I live without you?
Yes y-y-yeeess Probably God willing.
I'll carry my hate for you into the hospital.
I'll whisper it when I wake up in its bed.
I'll taste it when I walk to breakfast.
I'll sweat it when I do push-ups on the hospital floor.
I'll swallow it when I suck down the lukewarm water I'm dreading.
I'll swat it in the dust flyaways of every hospital room windowsill.
Let it loose, Joey.
You're a man.
A dad, a brother, a son, a goofy guy, a fun date, a solid lawyer, a bad singer, a good sport, a hard worker, a man not afraid to cry, a person not afraid to try new foods, a dude who likes to fly but doesn't hate a long drive.
Take the long way home.
The cards are on the table, the drinks are all run out.
They never saw the best in me.
Here's to those who did.
You'll probably forget me.
You'll find another friend.
One day I'll hear some laugher
In an out-of-state joint
With a partner or a client or a ding on my cellphone.
But I've walked your river.
I've stared into your sea.
You always took the best from me.
I would've given my life for you.
But I found the power not to.
And you hate me for it.
It isn't you, it's me.
There are other people out there for you.
You'll find someone else's life to wreck.
Ankles to chain, chains to rip, rips to tear, tears to drink, drinks to drown.
I won't hold a grudge.
I won't grieve you.
And I hope you'll forgive me too
When they come to me for help
And I bring my strength over you to help them heal
Because some slaveries can end.
I wish you well, alcohol.
May your echo never stop in someone else's soul.